Finally, managed to document the steps to enable webmentions support on one’s site. I hope it comes handy for at least few people. This should allow people to fetch mentions to their posts, including the replies from micro.blog, and display them along with posts.
Minor Micro.threads update: You can now favorite/unfavorite a post right from the thread discovery section. So, in addition to an option to open a conservation thread, you can now bookmark posts right on discovery. I hope the small change comes handy.
I had recently started working on updating Micro.threads application to focus on discovery, specifically user discovery. My social interactions on the internet have never been dull or frustrated since I joined Micro.blog. And it can largely be attributed to the extremely fine community of users that exists on the platform.
However, I had also realised that there were a lot many threads, many interactions that I was missing on, because finding new users was still not easy. Discover section exists, but it helped primarily to get new, interesting posts. There was a major section of the platform which could assist me to ease this problem. And that is people I follow and their posts in my stream.
Manton had recently updated the default behaviour of a user profile’s “Following” section to display only “a list of who someone is following that you aren’t following already”. That itself is a huge improvement in identifying new users. But, for me, that too was a bit troublesome. I wanted to focus not just on the follow status, but the interactions; not just focus on whom someone I already follow, follows, but rather whom they interact with frequently.
So it was only just to build a system, first of all for myself that will discover more amazing users that I can follow, that I can interact with and learn from. And so I did.
I have been playing around with the user discovery section of Micro.threads. And I think it will help others too. Just head over to the Micro.threads -> Discover section and give the application a try. You may find it helpful. You may not. But I think the feedback you share would be useful for me, and hopefully to the community too.
I believe this just acts as a placeholder until such discovery features are available in the official app itself. Till then, this would be a playground to identify more ways to discover interesting profiles and threads on Micro.blog.
I have made some key considerations at this point while developing and rolling this out.
- You will have to sign in with your Micro.blog user id and an app token, which is discarded the moment you log out. I have no intention to maintain any accounts or credentials. I plan to use the
/account/signinAPI from micro.blog in future; for now, app token is the quickest, officially supported way to get going.
- I haven’t optimised the performance of discover algorithm to the fullest. I plan to get that done that gradually.
- I am inclined to keep the information shown itself improving, and also add more ways to unearth user profiles and threads.This is just a first version that I was satisfied with and could roll out. I am already working on the threads parsing and discovery which I think will get done this weekend itself.
- I do not think I can get this perfect or can stay focused without the feedback from you all. So, any and every feedback is welcome.
I had recently realised the project I had much plan for wasn’t updated since sometime back. So much that for an observer it very well looks to be “potentially defunct”. There are many reasons why I couldn’t push regular updates to this. Priorities at home and at work just didn’t allow me enough time.
However, deep down I knew I just wasn’t satisfied with what I had achieved. I had a huge list of things that I needed to implement and the effort required I thought was huge. But I just couldn’t look at the stagnant progress of this service. I found it useful at multiple times and I know it can be improved so that others do too. So, I have decided to take up the project, small improvements at a time.
To start with, all the threads, mainly from posts featured in discover section and Emoji collections, are up to date. Well, @manton’s hard at work and has already grown the list of Emoji collections. Well, all the Emoji Collections from Micro.blog are available at Micro.threads now. So I (and others) can now get all the recommendations for that one 🍕 parlour or one’s 🗺️ogue.
But there’s more. The huge list of limitations I talked about at the top? Yeah, I have decided to start addressing them small updates at a time. Firstly just by noting them down.
- Threads concept itself is limited. Currently it takes a post id, fetches the conversation (thread) and then pull out all the links and only show these links as a thread.
- Creating thread is a mess and so is updating it.
- No way for external users to generate threads. Keeping threads updated is a chore at this point.
So, I have been back to drawing board, working on the ways I want to address these and present what I have in mind. I have a clear objective with this service. What’s to come has already found its place on the homepage, just as a placeholder for now. I wish I manage to deliver it to my satisfaction, first and fore most. If along the way, it helps the community, well and good.
Back to work.